The day I brought these into work, I was a little tired.
I had gotten less than 6 hours of sleep the night before since my roommates SUCK, and when my alarm went off in the morning, it rudely fell onto the wood floor, UNDER MY BED, while still going off, which meant I had to crawl around on the floor still half asleep, listening to the worst sound on Earth, sleep mask askew on my forehead, trying not to DIE or smash my alarm clock into a million pieces. I had coffee when I got to work and busted open a can of Diet Coke by 11 am. (I almost never drink coffee and can usually wait until 11:30 for my first Diet Coke of the day. Yeah, that's right, I said first. Judge me; I dare you.) If I could have hooked myself up to a caffeine IV, I would have.
So clearly, what I really needed, was some sugar. Luckily, I had these little darlings to fortify me.
It's hard to say how this shortbread compared to the Shortbread recipe I made from Indulge since it was one of the first things I made and was months ago. Dan thinks this recipe turned out better, and they were definitely more buttery due to the additional STICK, but I remember liking Clark's shortbread straight from the oven, whereas these? Not so much. They seemed a little bland at first or like the butter was a little overpowering, but I actually thought these were better the next day, when I had one at work. I'm not sure if the flavors just developed a little more, or if I was just withdrawing from my chocolate addiction, which happens like clockwork right around 2 p.m., but I enjoyed this much more than I had the night before.
I also think shortbread is one of those things that's either your favorite or you can take it or leave it. My mother? Loves it, especially dipped in chocolate. Me? Give me a warm, chewy chocolate chip cookie over shortbread any day.
Chocolate-Dipped Shortbread Cookies
Yield: About 24 cookies
3/4 pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup sugar, plus extra for sprinkling
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp kosher salt
6-7 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
1. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment (or with a wooden spoon or spatula), mix together the butter and 1 cup sugar until just combined. Add the vanilla.
In a separate bowl, sift together the flour and salt, and add them to the butter mixture. Mix on low speed until the dough starts to come together.
Dump onto a surface dusted with flour and shape into a flat disk. Wrap in plastic and chill for 30 minutes.
2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
3. Roll the dough 1/2'' thick and cut into 3 by 1'' fingers, either using a cookie cutter, pastry wheel, or pizza cutter. Place the cookies on a parchment-lined baking sheet and sprinkle with sugar.
Bake for 20-25 minutes, until the edges begin to brown. Allow to cool to room temperature.
4. When the cookies are cool, put about half the chocolate in a glass bowl and microwave on high for 30 seconds. Stir with a wooden spoon. Continue to heat and stir in 30-second intervals until the chocolate is just melted. Add the remaining chocolate and allow to sit at room temperature, stirring often, until it's completely smooth. Stir vigorously until the chocolate is smooth and slightly cooled.
5. Using a butter knife to spread the chocolate on half of each cookies. Alternatively, hold each cookie by the sides and dip the top half into the chocolate at an angle, allowing the excess to drip off. Set dipped cookies back on the parchment-lined baking sheet and allow to sit in a cool place. If your kitchen is not cool, place in the fridge to harden. Store at room temperature.
From Ina Garten